Get Organized! Me?

Yes, you! Here are 10 tips for getting organized offered by members of the Minnesota Chapter of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO MN). NAPO and Arc’s Value Village presented a series of free Get Organized for Back to School mini-workshops at Arc’s Value Village in Richfield on Saturday, July 19. Here are my favorite tips:

1. Block out time on your calendar to get organized, just as you would block out time for a doctor appointment. It’s the key to calming the chaos, says Andrea Haft of Uncomplicated Living.

2. Make it easy for kids to hang up their clothes by lowering closet rods and taking the lids off of bins, says Christine Daves of Think Organized.

3. Rachel Loeslie suggests taking 9 minutes a day and create a game you can win. Pick up and put away quickly! She also advises clearing 9 items from a room for 9 days in a row. Do it in small doses and see big results! Finally, she says to play music while you clear clutter – it lifts your energy and makes cleaning up more fun.

4. Think vertical and multipurpose for dorm rooms. Karen Northway takes men’s t-shirts and sews them shut at the bottom or ties the bottom. She then cuts the necklines to enlarge the openings and hangs them on hangers to create dirty clothes hampers. Make two – one for light clothes and one for dark. Your “laundry bags” can be washed at the same time.

5. Susi McCune, SOS for Mess Distress, suggests asking the magic question when organizing your closets:  “If I had the opportunity, would I wear that today?”

6. Another great tip from Susi McCune, give each family member a mesh bag and have them put their dirty socks in their bag. Wash and dry the bag full of dirty socks and return it to them and they can match them up and put them away.

7. Dawnee Dorholt, Spaces at Work, suggests having a designated space in the mudroom or by your door to put items so they are easy to grab as you head out the door each day.

8. The key to organizing garages is tackling it in short sessions of 30 minutes or an hour, says Jane Scheidnes of Art Of Organizing. Jane recommends getting help moving the trash, recycling, determining things that can be donated and helping you make decisions.

9. Ann Jensen, Arc’s Value Village Thrift Stores & Donation Centers, recommended looking at the A to Z Donation Guide to see all the things you can donate!

10. Follow Arc’s Value Village on Facebook to learn about future workshops!

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